Deer Families

Deer Hill School News . May 15, 2020

Hello Deer Hill Families,

It looks like we are taking a turn toward warmer weather which is a welcome change!

Now, on to some PEP!

Something Personal

While many of us have taken business casual to a whole new level in the world of Zoom, the other day I found myself needing to step it up a bit for a particular meeting. At the same time I knew that if I wasn't careful, I'd stay tethered to my computer for 12 hours and not pause to enjoy what was predicted to be a beautiful day. Add to that the fact that like the dishwasher, our laundry hamper always seems to be full to the brim (inexplicable since we don't go anywhere!), and I felt like I needed to plan my outfit carefully for the day. The two photos below depict my solution: make myself Zoom presentable from the shoulders up, then ditch the button-down, lose the slippers, and grab my sneakers to head out for a quick walk.

This lighthearted example of "things aren't always what they seem" has a more serious cousin, the notion of the quiet burden. The quiet burden is what those around us carry that is hidden from our view. While life might sparkle on the outside (or on Facebook and Instagram!), I challenge you to find someone who isn't impacted by a quiet burden to some degree, especially in the midst of a pandemic. While their very nature means it's difficult to identify the exact shape and weight of each other's burden, just recognizing that they exist can lighten a load. So can knowing when to lean in and when to step back, when to talk and when to listen. Since we began our remote learning odyssey together, I have repeated the mantra, do what you can.This is in recognition of all of the burdens we carry and the fact that remote learning shouldn't be one of them. On that next sunny remote learning day when both an assignment and a bike ride are calling your child's name, I hope you grab your helmets and head out the door. You have my blessing.

Something Educational

This week's educational section is more logistical in nature as this year draws to a close and we consider some of the transitions that will occur. Here are some Need to Knows:

For current Deer Hill 5th graders:

  • Although we can't be together this June, the PSO and 5th grade teachers want to celebrate you! Please visit the PSO website to see what information we need from you to make a special end-of-year keepsake. The details were previously emailed directly from the PSO and will also be shared by 5th grade teachers in their Weekly Communications this evening.

  • Principal Mills and the staff of Cohasset Middle School are excited to welcome rising 6th graders next fall. In his letter to 5th grade families Principal Mills outlines several key steps that will facilitate this transition. Thank you for familiarizing yourself with the process and opportunities to engage.

For current 3rd and 4th graders:

  • Last week I shared our placement process. Our window for accepting input from families has now closed, and Deer Hill staff is focusing their attention on thoughtfully building classes for the 2020-21 school year. One thing I heard loud and clear -- students miss their teachers and current class cohorts very much. While Osgood has made the decision to move whole class cohorts to the next grade (including our incoming 3rd graders), Deer Hill is not in a position to make a uniform decision across all classes and will likely create new groupings in our 4th and 5th grade placements. Please know that whether we take a traditional route in our class makeups for next year or pursue other options in specific cases, our objective is to meet the needs of all of our learners in a way that promotes their academic and social emotional success.

For incoming 3rd graders:

  • I'll be hosting a Parent Night for incoming Deer Hill 3rd graders on Tuesday, June 2nd at 7pm. Zoom information will be emailed directly to those families. The 3rd grade team and I will be working closely with Principal Farrell and the 2nd grade team to ensure a smooth transition. Our plan will include opportunities to connect virtually with teachers and our building in the hopes of in person options closer to the start of school.

For all students:

  • As Superintendent Sullivan shared, we are finalizing plans for the return of student belongings. Please stay tuned.

Something Profound

If you want to find out who won our March (& April & May!) Madness book brackets, you'll have to scroll down. However, in this section I wanted to share a bit of the "why" behind our selection of "Windows and Mirrors" as this year's theme. For that I'd love for you to take a peek at this eloquent Tedx Talk by children's author Grace Lin, "The Windows and Mirrors of Your Child's Bookshelf". Deer Hill is proud of the work we're undertaking to build an inclusive school community where students see themselves in our curriculum while also appreciating the differences and perspectives of others. Most importantly, through ongoing reflection, training, and action steps, we are committed to being a safe space for all students to be their unique, wonderful, selves.

All the best,

Alexandra L. Sullivan

Principal, Deer Hill School

Deer Sightings & Photo Opps

From class yoga, to cards that show we care, to hanging with a "flat" version of our teachers, Deer Hill is keeping busy!

4th Grade Book Celebration

Our talented students are at it again! So many 4th graders shared their interpretations of favorite book covers as part of a recent assignment. I wish I could share them all!

Drumroll Please!

Our March Madness book brackets have been a wonderful journey. Thank you for joining us as we read so many wonderful books! Our championship match was held this week and I'm pleased to announce our winner with 64.8% of the vote. Let's hear it for the hometown story!
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Cohasset Cares Cards

It's not too late to participate in this community service project! We are so grateful to the Cohasset Fire Department for collecting our cards and to 5th grade teacher, Ms. Bradford, for organizing the drive. Once you'e donated some cards, go home and make some more!
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